As expected, a proposed tuition increase for Tarleton State University was unveiled Wednesday during a public hearing to discuss tuition and fee plans for 2014-15.

The increase comes as a result of calculations using the Consumer Price Index and inflation, and the university moving to a mandated guaranteed tuition program.

The program will guarantee the tuition price for students whenever they enroll.

For example, an incoming freshman in the 2014-15 academic year will see a 5.6 percent increase from the tuition and fee price of the 2013-14 academic year. However, the student's price will then be locked in for the next four years and will not increase unless the student attends school longer than four years.

"The purpose of the guaranteed tuition program is to make sure students know exactly what they're paying for so they can forecast the cost," said Tye Minckler, vice president for finance and administration. "The program will also encourage that students graduate in a timely manner of four years."

The guaranteed tuition covers about 75 percent of students' total costs, and does not include the cost of parking housing or athletic fees.

Students currently enrolled at Tarleton will also experience tuition increases, however, the increases are less and will remain constant until after their senior year.

Sophomores will see a 4.5 percent increase, juniors a 3.3 percent increase and seniors a 2.2 percent increase.

Another change the university will propose is in the amount of fees a student receives.

Fifteen fees in total are being collapsed into one called the University Service Fee.

The fee amount of $38.69 per credit hour was based on the calculations from fiscal year 2013 and will be equivalent to the fee amounts in the past, resulting in a revenue-neutral change.

The University Service Fee is included in the guaranteed tuition price.

"The advantage of collapsing these fees is that it's simpler to account for, it's simpler to manage budgets and it's a more effective way to manage the costs," said Minckler.

The tuition and fee increases will be presented to the Board of Regents in May for approval.